As life expectancy, the rate of obesity, and the number of sports injuries increase the demand for joint replacement surgeries also increases. Knee replacements account for half of the replacement surgeries performed. When our joints are damaged by injury or arthritis or just plain wear out your orthopaedist may recommend replacement surgery. A successful joint replacement will relieve pain and improve mobility because the joint will function properly again.
Most people have probably heard of a total knee replacement. Recently, the chairman of the Bronxcare Health System’s orthopedic surgery department Dr. Ira Kirschenbaum explained how a surgery he helped develop partial knee replacement works. The damage caused by arthritis can be limited to one of the knee’s three compartments. During the surgery, the end of the damaged bone is replaced using metal and medical plastic. A partial knee replacement induces less trauma and accelerates recovery.
Dr. Ira Kirschenbaum holds degrees from Brown, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, and Harvard. His post-graduation medical training consists in part of a residency at Montefiore Medical Center and a fellowship at the Rothman Institute in adult reconstructive orthopedic surgery. Over his three-decade career, Dr. Kirschenbaum has performed thousands of replacement surgeries.
The medical reference website Medscape Orthopaedics was established by Dr. Ira Kirschenbaum. He served as Medscape’s executive director until the site was purchased by WebMD.
As with other areas of medicine, joint replacement surgery has undergone some dramatic changes Dr. Ira Kirschenbaum reports. Technologies including 3D imaging and robotics have increased the rate of positive surgical outcomes. The advent of generic joint implants has lowered the cost of artificial joints.
Globally joint replacement is a $16.6 billion industry. Literally, the majority of replacement surgeries are performed in the Americas with Western Europe coming in a distant second with a rate of 20%.